Players find Mega Millions money with "Lost"

January 5, 2011 7:30:51 AM PST
Fans who followed "the numbers" from ABC's drama "LOST" won't go home empty-handed after Tuesday night's drawing.

The winning numbers in Tuesday's $355 million Mega Millions were: 4, 8, 15, 25, 47 and the Mega Ball 42.

On ABC's drama "LOST" - which was just beginning its final season last January, one of the characters, Hurley Reyes, won one of the biggest lottery jackpots in U.S. history by playing the numbers 4, 8, 15, 16, 23 and 42.

Matching 3 of the Mega Millions numbers plus the Mega Ball number pays out $150.

In the $355 million drawing on January 4, 2011, there were nearly 26,000 players who matched 3 numbers and the Mega Ball.

In the drawing on New Year's Eve, there were just over 9,000 players who matched 3 numbers and the Mega Ball.

So, the total number of winners hitting 3 numbers and the Mega Ball was about 3 times the previous drawing.

But, did playing the "LOST" numbers for the Mega Millions numbers create nearly 3 times the number of prize winners that would normally happen in the Mega Millions drawings? We looked back at the Mega Millions prize pools awarded during December 2010 to try to find out.

As the jackpot grew, the number of people playing Mega Millions also grew, so naturally the number of prizes awarded grew as well. But there does seem to be an increase in one particular prize because of people playing the "LOST" numbers.

For the 9 different Mega Millions drawings held throughout December 2010, the people who hit 3 numbers plus the Mega Ball accounted for .3% of the total number of people who won a prize in the Mega Millions lottery.

But, for the $355 million drawing held on January 4, 2011, the people who hit 3 numbers plus the Mega Ball accounted for nearly .5% of the total number of people who won a prize in the Mega Millions lottery.


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